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Let me introduce you to Commonfolk's good mates, Flavia and Gabriel Oliveira. These legends are multi-generational coffee farmers and producers, and we've been working with them since we opened our doors in 2013. Their amazing coffees make up almost half of what we roast at Commonfolk!

Flavia and Gabriel run two farms, Bom Jesus and Sao Lucas, with their sons Gabriel Jnr and Lucas. These boys are the sixth generation of coffee workers in their family - can you believe it? We first met Flavia and Gabriel when they came to visit us in 2013, and we've been tight ever since. We've even hosted Gabriel Jnr a few times, and in 2019 we went to visit the fazendas ourselves.

Bom Jesus is the main farm, and it's huge. They've got all the gear and gadgets needed for coffee production, including offices and machinery. The other farm is a bit smaller and is about 30 minutes away on a dirt track. It's got its own waterfall, which is pretty cool if you ask us! Between the two farms, there are three million coffee trees, and they're always planting more.

Most of the coffee in Brazil is picked by machines, but Bom Jesus keeps it real and still employs locals to handpick a portion of their beans. It's more expensive, but it's worth it to support the community. They process their coffee in two main styles: Pulped-Natural and Brazil-Natural. The Pulped-Natural process is like a normal honey process, where the cherry is separated and pulped before drying. The coffee from Bom Jesus is then mechanically dried before being finished off on concrete patios. The Brazil-Natural process is fully dried in cherry on patios, which is different from how they do it in Africa and Central America.

Once the coffee is dried, it's blended into one of eight different grades or products based on its flavour and cup quality. The highest quality coffee is the Bom Jesus, which we've been featuring since day one. We also use the Labareda in our Godfather blend all year round. The rest of the coffee is graded into lower quality lots and sold around the world. Even the lowest quality beans aren't wasted and are sold for internal domestic sales.

We love Flavia and Gabriel not just for their coffee but for the amazing work they do in their local community. They provide housing for their staff and even have an in-house kindergarten and other education resources. In 2008, Flavia created a charity organisation called GIMA, which teaches young people about social and environmental responsibility. Every year, thousands of local children come to an Olympics-style festival and play games. In 2020, they donated tablets and mobile internet to help children stay connected and continue their education during the pandemic.

Unfortunately, in 2021, both farms were hit hard by frosts that wiped out almost a third of Brazil's entire coffee crop. This put a lot of pressure on the global coffee price and made things tough for Brazilian producers, including Flavia and Gabriel. But because of our long-term partnership, we committed to buying all the coffee we needed from them, even at a higher price. This way, we could help them out and continue to roast their amazing coffee.

Our relationship is built on shared risk, and even though things are tough, we've continued to strengthen our bonds as friends and coffee partners.